Economist Job Description
An economist is a social scientist with an expert knowledge of economics – the study of goods and services. Economists study the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services by collecting and analyzing economic and statistical data, monitoring trends, and evaluating economic systems.
An economist should be inquisitive, quick-witted, practical, investigative and methodical, and have the ability to think critically, make good judgments and solve problems. They should be able to communicate effectively to explain information to others in the simplest of ways.
Famous economists include Richard Henry Tawney (Religion and the Rise of Capitalism), Xenophon (author of Oeconomicus), Friedrich August von Hayek (optimum allocation of resources), Karl Marx (founder of modern communism), and Antoine Augustin Cournot (Influenced the use of mathematics in economics).
Pursue a career in economics if you have an analytical mind and interest in studying the society to find out how people use scarce resources to satisfy their unlimited needs and wants.
What does a Economist do?
Economists may do some or all of the following:
- study and explain economic events
- conduct research, collect and analyze data
- monitor economic trends, and develop forecasts
- use mathematical models to develop theories on inflation and other issues
- apply economic theories and practices
- estimate the economic effects of specific changes in legislation or public policy
- give advice and recommendations on how to improve the efficiency of a system
- write reports and prepare statistical charts
- make presentations and give speeches
- teach and supervise others
Where does a Economist work?
Places of work for economists include:
- Banks and financial institutions
- Multinational companies
- International organizations
- Market research companies
- Government establishments
- media and publishing houses
- Colleges and universities
Economists usually work normal office hours, but may sometimes work evenings and weekends to meet deadlines. Their work is usually office based, but they may travel for research or to attend conferences.
What is Required to Become a Economist ?
To become an economist, you will need a master's or doctoral degree in economics or a similar discipline.
Just to give you an idea, some of the classes that you’ll be taking in college may include:
- Linear algebra
- Principles of Microeconomics
- Principles of Macroeconomics
- Intermediate Microeconomic Theory
- Intermediate Applied Macroeconomics
- Statistical Methods in Economics
- International trade and policy
- Financial accounting
- Economics Research methods
An Economist may specialize to become any of the following:
- microeconomist – an economist who specializes in microeconomics
- macroeconomist – an economist who is specializes in macroeconomics
- econometrician – an economist who is specializes in econometrics
- experimental economist – an economist who specializes in experimental economics
- financial economist – an economist who specializes in financial economics
- international economist – an economist who specializes in international economics
Knowledge, Skills and Attributes
Economists need to have:
- confidence and humility
- persistence and diligence
- creativity and innovation
- intellectual curiosity
- good attention to detail
- good interpersonal skills
- good listening and communication skills
- good judgment and decision making skills
- analytical and problem solving skills
- time management and organizational skills
- math and computer skills
- the ability to work well under pressure
- the ability to keep information private
- the ability to teach and instruct others
- the ability to work well independently and in a team
- the ability to stay up to date with current events
- the ability to make presentations and give speeches
- the ability to tolerate people who think differently from them
- the ability to identify problems, predict outcomes and evaluate policies
- knowledge of political science and the ability to follow political trends
- knowledge of project management principles and practices
- knowledge of sociology
- knowledge of statistics analysis and research methods
- knowledge of economic theories
- knowledge of econometrics
- knowledge of relevant business laws and regulations
Should I be a Economist ?
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- Market Research Analyst
- Financial Analyst
- Bank Worker
- Political Scientist
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